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Posted February 7, 2013
Linn-Mar cruises to state duals

MARION — There were no big celebrations for the Linn-Mar wrestling team Wednesday night.

The Lions earned yet another berth in the state duals wrestling tournament with a convincing 48-12 win over visiting Clinton in a Class 3A regional dual at Linn-Mar.

Doug Streicher’s team won 11 of the 14 matches, but the veteran Linn-Mar coach said there were somes lulls for his team that advanced to next Wednesday’s state duals at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines.

“Overall, it was a good performance, but we were flat at times,” he said. “We won a couple of close ones and we lost a couple of close ones. We have some things to work on before (the district meet on) Saturday.”

One of the losses was a bit of a shocker as highly regarded junior Alijah Jeffery gave up an escape and then was taken down late in the third period of a 6-4 loss to Hunter Genco at 120 pounds.

“That was one match that got away from us,” Streicher said.

Jeffrey is the top-ranked wrestler at 120. Genco is ranked fifth.

Another top-ranked Lion, Ross Lembeck, had a solid performance at 152, holding off No. 3-rated Dustin Caldwell, 5-3.

“That was a good win for Ross,” Streicher said. “He has been out a month with an injury and that was a tough kid he was able to beat.”

In another 1-3 match-up, Linn-Mar’s Joel Northrup was dominant in a 12-1 major decision over Alex Caldwell.

“We got some other good wins,” Streicher said. “We got a good win (Dakota Digmann) at 160, beating a real tough kid and we got a win at 195 (Sam Nowak) over a kid who has beaten us before.”

The Lions had four pins — Digmann, Matt Wempen (113), Toby Northrup (132) and Shea Hartzler (138).

“I like where we are sitting right now,” Streicher said. “We are making good progress.”

Clinton’s other wins were by Nick Hatheway (170) and Jake Oldaker (heavyweight).

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